GRAHAM BUCKTON reports on their August Open Day
View of some of the visiting club gazebos, plus the steering course.
The club has run a relatively successful Open Day for the last three years, so for our main event of 2009 on the 16th August it was felt something a little more adventurous was needed. The previous shows would be more accurately described as model boat regattas, as on the whole it was other model boaters and model boat clubs that attended. This time we felt sufficiently confident to invite the general public of Goole to take part. The club committed a sizeable budget to promotion and for the preceding two weeks advertisements appeared in the local newspapers. In one case the publication also produced an editorial to go with the insert. The promotion of the show was enhanced by the Yorkshire Waterways Museum, with whom we have a very close working relationship, also featuring the Open Day in one of their large adverts. In addition a number of high quality posters featured in local shop windows.
As the saying goes: ‘It pays to advertise’, as members of the public were entering the site before the official start time and carried on pouring in for the remainder of the day. What they got to see was a considerable number of model boats, both on the water and in the static displays from ourselves, CADMA, Grimsby and Cleethorpes MBC, Hull MBC, Kirklees MBC, Vicar Water Models and York MBC. It was pleasing to see so many clubs make an appearance, but what was more gratifying was the considerable number of members from each organisation present. I think it’s true to say we have never had so many model boaters on our site at any one time before. As mentioned earlier, we work closely with the Yorkshire Waterways Museum and once again they were present showing the flag, selling museum orientated items and tickets for trips around the docks on their preserved diesel tug Wheldale. In some respects this is a unique feature of our events and as is so often the case all the dock trips were fully sold out. Wheldale was not the only full size vessel at the show, as a superb Dutch barge from the Viking Marina was moored adjacent to the No.5 Boat Hoist, with visitors being invited aboard to view the luxurious interior and have the navigational and sailing aids explained.
Having invited the public to come and savour model boating it was necessary to provide more than a few models chugging around the pond. What we decided upon was a steering competition and a tug-towing demonstration and although there were plenty of entrants for the steering, only one brave soul attempted to get around the course with the ‘tow’. This was a little strange as just a few miles down the M62 the Balne Moor club (which by the way is closer to Goole than it is to Doncaster) cannot get enough of tug-towing. Also during the afternoon each club had exclusive use of the pond so the visitors could see the number and quality of their members’ models.
With the numbers of visitors on site, the tombola, treasure hunt and a ‘bottle bank’ did a roaring trade, as did the refreshments stand which literally sold out of everything. The ‘Bring & Buy’ stall also did well with so many modellers present. Widening our horizons certainly paid dividends, as not only did many more members of the public get to see the hobby in its true environment, but the club funds were substantially boosted, so as I said at the beginning it pays to advertise! For further information about Goole MBC please contact: Graham Buckton (Secretary), tel: 01405 839777, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or please check website: www.goolemodelboatclub.co.uk
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